“Whoa, what is that?” says my coworker, Dan, looking at the brightly colored, squiggly structure on my computer screen I’m flipping and tugging at with clicks of my mouse. “It’s a protein. I’m playing Foldit,” I reply, clicking and dragging on a blue sidechain to eliminate the red spiky “clash” ball between it and another [...]... Read more »
Cooper S, Khatib F, Treuille A, Barbero J, Lee J, Beenen M, Leaver-Fay A, Baker D, Popović Z, & Players F. (2010) Predicting protein structures with a multiplayer online game. Nature, 466(7307), 756-60. PMID: 20686574
More research is needed into antioxidants found in plants, which may actually aggravate health conditions rather than benefiting people who eat them. Specifically, quercetin and ferulic acid have been shown to aggravate kidney cancer in severely diabetic laboratory rats, according to a study in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. Kuan-Chou Chen, Robert Peng, and [...]... Read more »
Hsieh CL, Peng CC, Cheng YM, Lin LY, Ker YB, Chang CH, Chen KC, & Peng RY. (2010) Quercetin and Ferulic Acid Aggravate Renal Carcinoma in Long-Term Diabetic Victims. Journal of agricultural and food chemistry. PMID: 20669956
It is a cultural norm in various countries to give children candy for Halloween. While I don’t have kids or generalized advice on controlling their candy intake around this holiday, the flip side are the ethics of doling out junk if … Continue reading →... Read more »
Schwartz MB, Chen EY, & Brownell KD. (2003) Trick, treat, or toy: children are just as likely to choose toys as candy on halloween. Journal of nutrition education and behavior, 35(4), 207-9. PMID: 12859885
Yes, the usual term is “morbidly” obese (a term I do not like), but today’s post is simply to draw my readers’ attention to a special issue of Critical Care Clinics dedicated entirely to the critical care of patients with severe obesity.
This special issue is edited by Marilyn Haupt and Mary Jane Reed from Temple [...]... Read more »
When it comes to studying Trypanosomes, it pays to play it cool. Transmitted by the bite of the Tsetse fly in sub-Saharan Africa, members of the Trypanosoma brucei species are responsible for the fatal human disease sleeping sickness as well as nagana in cattle. The parasite has a complex lifecycle, and attacks the central nervous [...]... Read more »
Höög JL, Gluenz E, Vaughan S, & Gull K. (2010) Ultrastructural investigation methods for Trypanosoma brucei. Methods in cell biology, 175-96. PMID: 20869523
Six-footers shouldn’t start panicking when they read today’s news story that being taller could increase the risk of testicular cancer. Being tall doesn’t directly cause cancer. It’s just one of many physical traits that are linked to a person’s risk, in the same way that fair-skinned people have a higher risk of skin cancer. The [...]... Read more »
Lerro, C., McGlynn, K., & Cook, M. (2010) A systematic review and meta-analysis of the relationship between body size and testicular cancer. British Journal of Cancer, 103(9), 1467-1474. DOI: 10.1038/sj.bjc.6605934
A new study shows why leopards and other big cats are spotted, striped or melanistic -- all black. In short, big cats' patterning and pattern attributes evolved in relation to their ecology and behaviors... Read more »
William L. Allen, Innes C. Cuthill, Nicholas E. Scott-Samuel, & Roland Baddeley. (2010) Why the leopard got its spots: relating pattern development to ecology in felids. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. info:/10.1098/rspb.2010.1734
Generational differences in work values: Leisure and extrinsic values increasing, social and intrinsic values decreasing From Journal of Management This study examines a US nationally representative sample of young people and measures their values at the same age at different points in time, to observe generational differences in values. It is recognized that today’s workforce [...]... Read more »
Twenge, J., Campbell, S., Hoffman, B., & Lance, C. (2010) Generational Differences in Work Values: Leisure and Extrinsic Values Increasing, Social and Intrinsic Values Decreasing. Journal of Management, 36(5), 1117-1142. DOI: 10.1177/0149206309352246
It's nearing that spooky time of year again. The traditions of Halloween actually come from countries such as Ireland, Scotland and England. According to Kelley (1919) "Americans have fostered them, and are making this an occasion something like what it must have been in its best days overseas. All Hallowe'en customs in the United States are borrowed directly or adapted from those of other countries". This Special Edition focuses on the Brief History & Psychology of Halloween.According to Ke........ Read more »
Dodd, M. (2007) Bumps in the Night. Working Mother, 30(7). info:/
SCHWARTZ, M., CHEN, E., & BROWNELL, K. (2003) Trick, Treat, or Toy: Children Are Just as Likely to Choose Toys as Candy on Halloween. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, 35(4), 207-209. DOI: 10.1016/S1499-4046(06)60335-7
Obesity is one of the most misunderstood issues in health care. And, apologies in advance, one of the biggest.
It's defined, along with "overweight" and "underweight" purely by BMI. And while most would agree that the height to weight ratio is probably not the best determinant of health, it doesn't stop most of us from using it as a measure of the general chubbiness of the population.... Read more »
Boutelle, K., Cafri, G., & Crow, S. (2010) Parent-Only Treatment for Childhood Obesity: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Obesity. DOI: 10.1038/oby.2010.238
Ever wondered how pure mathematicians have fun? The following is from the 1967 paper Modern Research in Mathematics by A. K. Austin, from the Department of Pure Mathematics at the University of Sheffield. It's a send-up, by the way...
A note on piffles by A. B. Smith
A. C. Jones in his paper "A Note on the Theory of Boffles," Proceedings of the National Society, 13, first defined a Biffle to be a non-definite Boffle and asked if every Biffle was reducible.
C. D. Brown in "On a paper by A. ........ Read more »
Farlow, S. (1980) Three Mathematical Satires A rebuke of A. B. Smith's paper, 'A Note on Piffles'. International Journal of Mathematical Education in Science and Technology, 11(2), 285-304. DOI: 10.1080/0020739800110222
“Gene therapy”… …oooooh… Sounds very cool, doesn’t it? Sounds like the FUTURE! Where’s my JETPACK!!!?!?! But of course “gene therapy” is kind of a buzzword. A lot of people throw it around, but it seems like a lot of people don’t know what it really MEANS, and what it can be used for. But it [...]... Read more »
Alexander B, Warner-Schmidt J, Eriksson T, Tamminga C, Arango-Llievano M, Ghose S, Vernov M, Stavarche M, Musatov S, Flajolet M.... (2010) Reversal of Depressed Behaviors in Mice by p11 Gene Therapy in the Nucleus Accumbens. Science translational medicine, 2(54). PMID: 20962330
Sporotrichosis is caused by the thermally dimorphic (can grow in one of two different forms depending on the environmental temperature) fungus Sporothrix schenckii and is characterised by subcutaneous nodules that can blister and ulcerate resulting in satellite lesions developing around the initial site of infection.... Read more »
Dooley DP, Bostic PS, & Beckius ML. (1997) Spook house sporotrichosis. A point-source outbreak of sporotrichosis associated with hay bale props in a Halloween haunted-house. Archives of internal medicine, 157(16), 1885-7. PMID: 9290549
by WhySharksMatter and Southern Fried Scientist in Southern Fried Science
Earth is facing a biodiversity crisis so severe that many conservation scientists refer to it as a mass extinction event. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), a professional network of 11,000 volunteer scientists belonging to more than 1,000 government and NGO agencies in 160 countries, evaluates species worldwide and determines their risk of [...]... Read more »
Hoffmann, M. et al. (2010) The impact of conservation on the world's vertebrates. Science. info:/
[Wherein our hero considers how he might think himself smarter. Yet it appears Brain-Training might just be woo.]At this time of year I start wondering how to get an edge in my exams. Is studying really the best way about it? Last exam period I examined the best way to use caffiene, and I ran a series of informal experiments to figure my own personal method out [here]. This time round I w; (read more)
Source: Rift - Discipline: Psychology... Read more »
Jaeggi SM, Buschkuehl M, Jonides J, & Perrig WJ. (2008) Improving fluid intelligence with training on working memory. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 105(19), 6829-33. PMID: 18443283
Dahlin, E., Nyberg, L., Bäckman, L., & Neely, A. (2008) Plasticity of executive functioning in young and older adults: Immediate training gains, transfer, and long-term maintenance. Psychology and Aging, 23(4), 720-730. DOI: 10.1037/a0014296
Carretti, B., Borella, E., & De Beni, R. (2007) Does Strategic Memory Training Improve the Working Memory Performance of Younger and Older Adults?. Experimental Psychology (formerly "Zeitschrift für Experimentelle Psychologie"), 54(4), 311-320. DOI: 10.1027/1618-3126.96.36.1991
Twenty five years ago two budding scientists, Roberto Car and Michele Parrinello, used their expert knowledge, coupled with enthusiasm and a healthy dose of naivety, to develop a groundbreaking method for computer simulation. ... Read more »
Car, R., & Parrinello, M. (1985) Unified Approach for Molecular Dynamics and Density-Functional Theory. Physical Review Letters, 55(22), 2471-2474. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.55.2471
Why are some genomes so big? I mean, seriously. Why would the marbled lungfish with a genome weighing 132.83 picograms (pg) need an estimated 130,000,000,000 bp? It may have to do with that fact that these fish undergo metamorphosis, and the large developmental coding this could entail.
Then there is the genome of Paris japonica, a rare plant whose genome weighs 152.23 pg, making its genome the largest known so far, at a whopping estimated 150,000,000,000 bp. (Humans have a genome size of 3,........ Read more »
Fischer, M., Allen, M., Wilson, W., & Suttle, C. (2010) Giant virus with a remarkable complement of genes infects marine zooplankton. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1007615107
An ‘enigmatic’ disorder – this is what Perry Nicassio calls fibromyalgia. I hadn’t thought of it that way, because so many chronic pain problems seem to be equally ‘enigmatic’! It’s a common disorder, affects many more women than men, has a multiplicity of effects on people ranging from fatigue, poor sleep, widespread aching, other pain … Read more... Read more »
Nicassio, P. (2010) Psychological approaches are effective for fibromyalgia: Remaining issues and challenges. Pain, 151(2), 245-246. DOI: 10.1016/j.pain.2010.08.011
Glombiewski, J., Sawyer, A., Gutermann, J., Koenig, K., Rief, W., & Hofmann, S. (2010) Psychological treatments for fibromyalgia: A meta-analysis. Pain, 151(2), 280-295. DOI: 10.1016/j.pain.2010.06.011
Stefan Pukatzki (University of Alberta, Canada) and coworkers have found that the bacterium which causes cholera attacks other bacteria common to the human stomach and intestines. This finding may help scientists treat and vanquish cholera outbreaks.... Read more »
MacIntyre, D. L., Miyata, S. T., Kitaoka, M., & Pukatzki, S. (2010) The Vibrio cholerae type VI secretion system displays antimicrobial properties. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1012931107
Marijuana and the munchies.
It’s no secret that marijuana very reliably increases appetite. Recently, research published in Nature has teased out an apparent mechanism by which internal cannabinoids are involved with gut microbiota. This affects inflammation, the metabolism of adipose tissue, and other factors implicated in obesity.
In addition, research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and blogged about by Neuroskeptic, showed that CB1 cannabinoid receptors ........ Read more »
Mahler, S., Smith, K., & Berridge, K. (2007) Endocannabinoid Hedonic Hotspot for Sensory Pleasure: Anandamide in Nucleus Accumbens Shell Enhances ‘Liking’ of a Sweet Reward. Neuropsychopharmacology, 32(11), 2267-2278. DOI: 10.1038/sj.npp.1301376
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